In September, RCIA begins its weekly discussion sessions, for adults interested in learning more about the Catholic faith and traditions. Those who have participated in RCIA at Faith Hope have been parents of children receiving sacraments who want to know more about what their children are learning; non-Catholic spouses of Catholics; baptized Catholics who did not receive First Communion or Confirmation and want to do so now; those who are just curious about the Catholic faith and want to know more. There is never any pressure to become Catholic.
The program is a wonderful and supportive opportunity for individuals who have different levels of interest:
- for those who are “merely exploring” the possibility of becoming a member of the Catholic Church
- for those who have decided to become a member of our faith community
- for those who have a Catholic spouse or fiancé and wish to learn more about their religion
RCIA provides a relaxed, welcoming, no-pressure setting for adults to address questions and learn about our Catholic faith, theology, rituals and practices.
Who can YOU encourage to “come and see”?
Contact the Parish Office at (847) 446-7646 for more information.
The RCIA Journey to the Easter Vigil and Beyond
The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is the process by which adults are initiated into the Roman Catholic community. Carefully planned stages, marked by liturgical rites in the presence of the whole community, help candidates join us in a continuing and deepening conversion into faith and discipleship.
Instituted at Vatican II, the RCIA is modeled on the “catechumenate” of the ancient Church. Becoming Christian in the early days of the Church involved a sharp break with the surrounding culture. The Church revived the catechumenate because believers in the modern world need the same careful preparation and caring support as they seek to live as Christians in a world which is often hostile to Christian ideals.
The RCIA is the first step on a lifelong journey of intellectual, emotional and spiritual conversion.
The Four Stages of RCIA:
- Inquiry - Seekers ask questions about Christianity and receive truthful, lifesharing answers from Catholic Christians.
- Catechumenate - Catechumenate means “time of serious study”. Catechumens (those who have not been baptized) and candidates (baptized Christians) join us at Sunday Mass and continue their study of the faith and reflection on Scripture. Sponsors are chosen during this stage to act as spiritual companions.
- Period of Purification and Enlightenment - A time of final preparation for initiation, or acceptance into the Catholic Church.
- Mystagogia -The time after initiation/acceptance (normally between Easter and Pentecost). Mystagogia means “leading into the mysteries”. It is a time to process what has happened and further live into the mysteries of the faith.
At the Easter vigil, when light drives out darkness, joyful sounds fill the silence and we proclaim and renew our resurrection hope, our candidates were sealed with the oil of Confirmation and shared the Eucharist as full members of the Roman Catholic community. Amen! Hallelujah! Welcome!
More about RCIA...
In the first chapter of John’s Gospel that is the invitation Jesus extends to Andrew. Not, follow me, or join up, just come and see.
That is the invitation the Church extends to all of us through the RCIA. The Right of Christian Initiation of Adults is a process through which new members enter the Church. It is also a process through which the entire faith community accompanies them on their journey. We know that we are all called to continuous conversion throughout our lives and the RCIA offers us an opportunity to deepen our own faith life as we share the experience with others.
Recent statistics tell us that of the 150.000 persons who annually participate in the RCIA:
- 60% are already baptized Christians.
- 25% have never been baptized.
- 14% are already baptized Roman Catholics who have not completed their initiation with the sacraments of Eucharist and Confirmation.
Do you know anyone who has expressed an interest in becoming Catholic ?
Anyone who would like to know more before deciding ?
Would you like to serve as a sponsor, catechist, or assistant ?
Over the past 17 years, the RCIA process at Faith Hope has welcomed people from various religions as well as those with no religious affiliation at all. Some were young adults who were engaged, or young couples starting a family. Others were long-time parishioners who had never gotten around to being confirmed. There were those who had been away from the Church. All found the RCIA team welcoming and supportive, and considered the journey one of spiritual and educational enrichment.
If you are interested or would like more information on RCIA, please contact the Parish Office by phone:
446-7646 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.